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The Seeds of a Crisis: A Theory of Bank Liquidity and Risk-Taking over the Business Cycle

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  • Acharya, Viral V
  • Naqvi, Hassan

Abstract

We examine how the banking sector may ignite the formation of asset price bubbles when there is access to abundant liquidity. Inside banks, to induce effort, loan officers are compensated based on the volume of loans. Volumebased compensation also induces greater risk-taking; however, due to lack of commitment, loan officers are penalized ex post only if banks suffer a high enough liquidity shortfall. Outside banks, when there is heightened macroeconomic risk, investors reduce direct investment and hold more bank deposits. This ‘flight to quality’ leaves banks flush with liquidity, lowering the sensitivity of bankers’ payoffs to downside risks and inducing excessive credit volume and asset price bubbles. The seeds of a crisis are thus sown.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 8851.

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Date of creation: Feb 2012
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:8851

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Keywords: bubbles; flight to quality; moral hazard;

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Cited by:
  1. Itai Agur & Maria Demertzis, 2011. ""Leaning Against the Wind" and the Timing of Monetary Pollicy," DNB Working Papers 303, Netherlands Central Bank, Research Department.
  2. Frank Smets, 2014. "Financial Stability and Monetary Policy: How Closely Interlinked?," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 10(2), pages 263-300, June.
  3. Marco Pagano, 2013. "Finance - Economic Lifeblood or Toxin?," EIEF Working Papers Series 1309, Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance (EIEF), revised Apr 2013.
  4. DellʼAriccia, Giovanni & Laeven, Luc & Marquez, Robert, 2014. "Real interest rates, leverage, and bank risk-taking," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 149(C), pages 65-99.
  5. Maddaloni, Angela & Peydró, José-Luis, 2010. "Bank risk-taking, securitization, supervision and low interest rates: Evidence from the euro area and the U.S. lending standards," Working Paper Series 1248, European Central Bank.
  6. Nguyen, Vu Hong Thai & Boateng, Agyenim, 2013. "The impact of excess reserves beyond precautionary levels on Bank Lending Channels in China," Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, Elsevier, vol. 26(C), pages 358-377.
  7. José de Gregorio, 2012. "Price And Financial Stability In Modern Central Banking," JOURNAL OF LACEA ECONOMIA, LACEA - LATIN AMERICAN AND CARIBBEAN ECONOMIC ASSOCIATION.
  8. Reinhart, Carmen M. & Rogoff, Kenneth S., 2008. "Is the 2007 US Sub-Prime Financial Crisis So Different? An International Historical Comparison," Scholarly Articles 11129156, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  9. Giovanni Dell'Ariccia & Luc Laeven & Gustavo Suarez, 2013. "Bank Leverage and Monetary Policy's Risk-Taking Channel," IMF Working Papers 13/143, International Monetary Fund.
  10. Santiago García & Carolina Rocha, 2011. "Una medición de la preocupación social por la inflación en Uruguay," Monetaria, Centro de Estudios Monetarios Latinoamericanos, vol. 0(3), pages 351-411, julio-sep.
  11. Jokivuolle, Esa & Kiema, Ilkka & Vesala, Timo, 2010. "Credit allocation, capital requirements and output," Research Discussion Papers 17/2010, Bank of Finland.
  12. Diana Bonfim & Carla Soares, 2013. "Is there a risk-taking channel of monetary policy in Portugal?," Economic Bulletin and Financial Stability Report Articles, Banco de Portugal, Economics and Research Department.
  13. Raymundo Chirinos, 2011. "¿Puede el Perú ser un nuevo milagro económico?," Monetaria, Centro de Estudios Monetarios Latinoamericanos, vol. 0(3), pages 321-349, julio-sep.
  14. Itai Agur & Maria Demertzis, 2011. "Ir en contra de los fundamentos y el momento oportuno de la política monetaria," Monetaria, Centro de Estudios Monetarios Latinoamericanos, vol. 0(3), pages 413-428, julio-sep.

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